Wind farm harms too much land to create too little power

Posted 5 April 2016 at 12:00 am


The APEX wind farm project should not proceed. Without tax and ratepayer subsidies APEX would never come to New York. The wind farm will destroy and obliterate property values and lower assessments over a minimum area of 12 mile by 3 mile or 36 square miles. Wind is a highly variable generation resource and cannot be relied upon to be available to meet the long-term needs of NYISO.

New York Nuclear Plants run above 90 percent availability, the NYPA Niagara Hydro Power has a “Plant Availability Factor” of 87.4 percent. Reliability and availability are essential factors in power generation.

APEX proposed 201 megawatt farm is mostly off line 75 percent of the time rendering maybe 50MW. 50MW is a meaningless insulting addition to New York’s existing 38,000MW plant facilities. Wind cannot be stored – use it or lose it. Niagara Hydro Power has a huge water storage reservoir for peak demands.

Niagara Hydro Power occupies a mere 3.6 square miles, generating a “Net Dependable Capacity” of 2,680MW – 2,680MW spread over 3.6 square miles makes sense, but 50MW spread over 36 square miles is nonsense.

Put another way it would take wind about 1,900 square miles to generate 2,680MW. You would have the wind farm laid out in an area 44 miles by 44 miles. Niagara Hydro with the Power Vista is a tourist attraction, while the APEX wind farm would be an eyesore forever and ever and drive people away.

In summary the APEX smart people seek to lay waste to 36 square miles of precious land for a very undependable 50MW while next door we have an underutilized but very dependable 2,680MW hydro electric power plant taking up only 3.6 square miles of land. Low-cost hydro power creates jobs, while high-cost unreliable wind power harms residential and business customers alike.

One wonders where do they find these smart people, and why wasn’t this pipe dream dead on arrival. Common sense should prevail; APEX should pack up and leave.

Gregory G. Woodrich